We all like to save a bit of money, but on the other side of things, you can’t shiver your way through the winter, either. Luckily, there is a middle ground. You can stay warm while keeping those heating costs under control at the same time. The key is keeping the heat that you have inside your home and using the heating equipment you have, efficiently. By following these simply, easy-to-follow tips, you will see your heating bill drop noticeably without spending an arm or a leg.
10) Replace worn or torn weather-stripping – This is an easy way to let heat escape your home. Weather-stripping is what helps your doors and windows keep a tight seal, keeping your heat in and the cold outdoor elements out.
9) Adjust your doors threshold – Related to the last entry, it’s all about maintaining as tight a seal as possible. Most doors allow you to adjust the threshold using a series of screws. Also, as with entry 10, sunlight is bad; if you see sunlight it’s a sure-fire sign that your seal isn’t tight enough.
8) Plug any holes – Two popular places that generally aren’t sealed as thoroughly as other areas of your home are electrical outlets and the plumbing. For the outlets, you can install inexpensive gasket liners and with the pipes, you can utilize caulking or inexpensive expanding foam insulation.
7) Attic entries or Chimney Flues – These are two areas that are very easily neglected. Even if your attic is well insulated, you don’t want to be wasting energy heating such a large, open space. You want to ensure that the entry is insulated. The same goes for the chimney; even if you have a closable vent, heat can still escape. Inflatable chimney plugs are available and inexpensive – just remember to remove it before using your fireplace.
6) Close windows and blinds at night, Keep them open during the Day – This can be a great way to naturally heat your home. Allowing the sun to enter and heat your home during the day is free. Then you can close windows and curtains to further insulate the home and keep that heat in.
5) Close off unused rooms – There is no sense in spending a lot of money heating rooms that you don’t use. Close doors leading to rooms that aren’t in use and close off heating vents in those rooms. Be careful about the basement, however. A cold basement will make your upper floors cooler. You may even consider purchasing a space heater – they use less energy than the furnace and allow you to heat only the room you are using.
4) Use the heat you’re creating anyway – If your cooking something on the stove-top or oven, keep the ventilation fan off. The same goes for showering – keep the ventilation fan off and keep that door open. Both these vents lead to the outdoor and immediately eject that heat. You might as well keep it in the home.
3) Heat yourself first, then the home – There really isn’t a better way to reduce your heating costs then by simply turning down the thermostat. Every degree that you are able to turn that furnace down will end up saving you money. Prepare the coach with warm blankets and get yourself a nice pair of wool socks. You will be comfortable and your pocket book will thank you.
2) Service the furnace – This one is a bit of a no-brainer. A clean, well-maintained furnace will simply work more efficiently. Make sure you are keeping it in peak working condition and keep those filters clean.
1) Consider a programmable thermostat – There is little sense in heating an empty home. The same goes for the nighttime, when you are likely nestled comfortably under Grandma’s comforter. A programmable thermostat will allow you to increase the heat when you and your family are home and utilizing the space. You can program the temperature to increase shortly before you arrive home in the evening and to reduce when you are sleeping.